Senior outside hitter Zana Bowens had a team-high 11 kills in Saturday’s 3-0 win over UC Davis at the Fresno State Classic. (Khone Saysamongdy/The Collegian)
Coming off a victory Friday night against Southern Utah (3-0) , the Bulldog volleyball team finished off the Fresno State Classic strong with a three-set sweep over UC Davis on Saturday at the Save Mart Center.
“Well, we talked after the Portland match about being resilient and coming back and doing our jobs – like taking care of each person’s position – and we did that in the last two matches,” head coach Lauren Netherby-Sewell said. “So I liked that we came back, we played tough and we played more consistent. Even with freshman in the middle, we’re setting them, we’re getting them involved, and those things are all good.”
The ‘Dogs (8-6) pounced on the Aggies early as they jumped out to an early 10-5 lead, forcing the Aggies (5-9) to call a timeout to regroup. UC Davis would quickly have to use another timeout as the lead for the ‘Dogs ballooned from five to seven as Fresno State led 15-8. The ‘Dogs would take the first set 25-17.
The second set would be no different for the ‘Dogs as they took a 21-13 lead. It looked as if the Aggies figured something when they when on a 6-1 run on the ‘Dogs, bringing the score to 22-19. But the ‘Dogs would put an end to that and finish off the second set 25-20.
Just like in the first two sets, the ‘Dogs would jump out to an early lead again leading the Aggies 10-5 and then 14-8 when the Aggies called their final timeout. With Fresno State rolling and UC Davis having no answer, the ‘Dogs would take the third set 25-15 and complete the sweep of the Aggies (25-17, 25-20, 25-15).
Senior outside hitter Zana Bowens lead the ‘Dogs with 11 kills on 25 attempts in the match. Sophomore Carly Scarbrough came up with 8 kills in 18 attacks with no errors through the match. Getting down and dirty for the ‘Dogs was junior libero Maggie Eppright who had 17 on the day. The assister of the match was junior setter Brooke Legaux who ended up with 24 assist on 52 total attempts.
“Brooke [Legaux] can pass and is one of our best servers, so you just can’t take her off the floor,” Netherby-Sewell said. “She just adds so much and it’s nice to see her having a great offensive game. If she can learn how to keep working that block, even though she’s smaller than what she’s facing, we’ll be in good shape.”
The Bulldogs never let the Aggies get over 20 points. Fresno State had 13 blocks on the day with 49 digs. The ‘Dogs also held the Aggies to a hitting percentage of .191.
“We have to outwork other teams. That’s one of our mottos but the team has to do it day in and day out,” Netherby-Sewell said. “Next week we open Mountain West play, we have to hit it hard because we play good teams and we want to win.”